Friends . . . Without Benefits?

Niall and Julia have been friend since they were knee high to a grasshopper. They did everything together; including moving to London for college. Julia's feeling for Niall have been developing rapidly but she is afraid that if she acts on them that Niall won't feel the same way and it will wreck their friendship. Niall isn't one to ruin a perfectly good friendship for a relationship, he's been offered the chance before. But, when he makes a suggestion to Julia, only acting in recent events, that she isn't happy with will he make that change or could he live with the guit and regret? (I apologize for my awful blurb, I really can't write them)

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1. Chapter 1

Chapter 1



Julie's P.O.V 



Summer. The best time of the year. 3 months of doing absolutely nothing with my best friends. What more could anyone want? Maybe money, but that's besides the point. 3 months of pure bliss and maybe some good weather too. Seriously, what's better than spending time with your friends in the sun? Yeah, exactly. Nothing is. 

So, I am sat here on my living room floor, thinking, when I hear the door creak, but take no notice seeing as there is a bit of a summer breeze outside and practically all the windows are open. Then I suddenly feel myself being pushed to the floor and straddled, having air squeezed out of my lungs. 

"LOU! HARRY! WHOEVER IT IS! GET OFF ME!" I scream with what was left of the oxygen in my lungs, as I feel two hands cover my eyes. 

'Guess again,' I hear an incredibly sexy Irish accent say as he removes his hands. 

'NIALLER! OH MY GOD! WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE!? I THOUGHT YOU WERE GOING TO GO STRAIGHT HOME!' I exclaim excitedly, before enveloping him into a bone crushing hug, causing him to fall on top of me. 

'Woah, steady on there, Julie. I know you missed me and all but I didn't think you missed me that much,' Niall winks, referring to our not-so-innocent position of him lying on top of me in the middle of my living room floor.

'Oh whatever Niall,' I answer, rolling my eyes at his stupidness, then pushing him off me and sitting on the floor, 'anyway. WHY ARE YOU HERE!?'

'My ear . . . I said going home could be delayed because they found out I was coming. There's no fun in that!' Niall says dramatically, sitting across from me. 

'Sorry. You and your surprise visits,' I laugh slightly, then the confusion kicks in, they have never found out that he was coming before which sparked the question, 'how did they find out?'

'I told my cousin Emma, you know her right?' Niall queries. 

'No, you've never mentioned her before and I've never met her,' I say, my voice dripping with sarcasm. 

'Haw-haw, hilarious. Anyway, I told her and she decided that she was going to tell Seán, I know you know Seán,' - he wiggles his eyebrows suggestively - 'and he let it slip when he was at my mams house. So there's no going home for me for awhile,' Niall sighed, sounding annoyed that he's not getting to go home. 

'Nothing happened between me and Seán,' I answer innocently, a little to innocently for Niall's liking, so before I can continue he interrupts me.

'That's why you barely speak to each other anymore and why when me and Emma came looking for ye one of the last times they were over the both of you emerged from the spare room in my flat with your clothes and hair looking rather dishevelled and the both of you sounding very guilty,' Niall replies smugly, crossing his arms across his chest and leaning back against the couch. 

Oh wow, look at his arms, there is a lot more muscle there than I remember. When did all this happen? 

NO! Stop thinking like that, Julie. Push the thoughts out of your head. Yes, that's better. Well done. 

He does look good though. 
No, he doesn't. 

Just look at his hair. 
It's just like any other time. 

His eyes, they're really blue lately. 
Once again, just like any other time. 

Just look at . . . Him. 
I've been doing that for years now, and nothing's changed. 

Snap out if it! 

Niall, that's all he is. My best friend. My shoulder to cry on . . . Okay that sounds a little weird but it's true. When I needed him he's been there for me, and vice-versa. And that's all he was ever going to be. 

When I've finished my little argument with myself I realise Niall is still waiting for my answer to his accusation, so I come back down to reality fast, quite fast. 

'Yeah, yeah, whatever,' I wave my hand dismissively at Niall and give up trying to drill a totally nonsense story into his head. 

You see, Niall was absolutely one hundred percent right in what he thought happened that night but I was not going to be telling him that. Telling him that I did actually sleep with HIS best friend . . . In HIS flat . . . While HE was there . . . I THOROUGHLY enjoyed it . . . And WOULD do it again in a heartbeat, was just like telling the Holy Mother she wasn't allowed to appear to schoolgirls in Ballinspittle anymore. It would crush his cute little soul if he found out at all (A/N: That's a proper Irish thing to say, so I'm really sorry if I've confused you all :3).

When I snapped out of my thoughts I had a sudden idea, 'YES! Louis is having a party tonight and you, my blonde haired, blue eyed, Irish friend are coming,'

'Do you think I'm out of the loop just because I finished college a week later than everyone else?' Niall laughs at my sudden outburst, 'I know that he's having a party, he is one of my best friends too and I do know I'm coming. Don't you worry your little arse about it,' 

'Did Niall Horan just refer to MY arse?' I gasp dramatically and put my hand on my heart, pretending to be offended by it. 

'Yes, as a matter of fact I did and I don't regret it,' Niall smirks, then flashes a dazzling smile in my direction. 

'That was just rude Niall,' I say turning my back to him and looking at him over my shoulder, attempting to be serious about the situation, but the look on Niall's face when he thinks I really am being serious, just cracks me up. Which ends in me lying on the floor in fits of laughter, 'o-oh my G-God Niall! Y-y-ou actually th-thought I-I-I was b-being serious! Y-y-your fa-face!'

'Julie! I really did think you were odd over that!' Niall says, slapping my thigh making a rather loud, unpleasant noise, because after all it was summer and I was wearing shorts, and causing a look of worry flash over Niall's face once again, 'Shit, that sounded really bad. Are you alright?'

'Jesus Niall, that really stung,' I say in disbelief, looking at my now red thigh with Niall's white handprint in the middle of it. I'm not over exaggerating when I say that it feels like about fifty bees stinging me all at once, the pain does subside quickly but I'm not telling Niall that for awhile, 'That is so sore. I'm going to have your handprint on my leg for weeks. You're explaining when someone asks "why is there a big handprint in the middle of your leg?" '

'I didn't mean to hit you that hard at all,' Niall says sounding really sincere. I can't help but think that I've actually managed to make him feel bad, maybe I should tell him it feels fine, 'I promise,'

I think about my next move, then after deciding to play the puppy dog eyes (and not tell him it's okay) I say, 'well, maybe a hug and a kiss would make it better,'

'I'll see what I can do,' Niall smiles, pulling me in for a hug. Why do his hugs always feel so good? Niall's hugs had always been the best at making you feel better. Maybe it had something to do with the way he smelt, the way he felt, the way that he was him and not who someone wanted him to be, the way he laughed at his own jokes and everyone else's even if they weren't funny. Just because he was, well, Niall. 

I'm delving way too much into this hug, it's a hug! How can you get that much out of a hug!? God, I'm turning into such a girl. Yeah, okay, obviously I'm AM a girl but I wasn't the stereotypical girly girl who drools over any good looking guy to pass her way. Or who had the most amazing body with curves in all the right places. Or who could be bothered to make her hair look presentable everyday. And I most certainly do not analyse every single word or move that comes from a guy to try to figure out if he likes me or not! 

So, yes, you could call me a tomboy if you like but that would be totally defying the fact that I absolutely love to dress up every chance I get. Not over the top but I love wearing dresses and skirts and make-up, and all that jazz, when I get the chance. That's not saying I parade around looking like a street-whore twenty-four/seven, I don't. On a normal day I'd end up wearing a pair of jeans, or even a tracksuit, just because I'm not a try hard person usually, just when I want to be. So, yes, I am looking forward to Louis' party later. 

Julie, stop thinking to yourself, especially like this. You're hugging Niall, that's what you're focusing on. And on that note, I slam hard back into reality with the help of Niall's voice. 

'So, about that kiss,' Niall whispers, still hugging me, 'I'm not kissing your leg,'

'I wasn't asking for you to kiss my leg, spanner!' I laugh quietly, trying my best not to burst his eardrum. 

'You weren't?' Niall asks, sounding slightly confused while letting go of me. 

'Nope,' I answer, popping the "p" and using my index finger to tap my cheek three times in a row. 

'That's not too bad I suppose,' Niall teases, poking my stomach. 

'Not too bad? It's better than kissing my leg,' I giggle, while pushing Niall's hand away and poking his chest in return. 

Ohh, is that a . . . Six pack I feel? Nah, it's probably not. But on second thoughts, he's poking me again, I think I'll just check again. 

I poke his chest. Several times for that matter, just to confirm or decline my suspicions. 

Yes, that is a six pack. It's not very defined but so what? It's still a six pack. 

JULIE COLLINS, IF YOU DO NOT STOP THIS THINKING AT ONCE YOU'RE . . . YOU'RE . . . YOU'RE NOT GOING TO LOUIS' PARTY!

That shut the little voice up alright, faster than Usain Bolt can run one hundred metres, and we all know that that's fast. 

'Am I getting my kiss now?' I question, turning my face to the side putting my cheek in line with Niall's lips. 

'Hmmm, I dunno,' Niall says, seductively, as if he has just had a sudden idea, 'I was thinking of something different,'

My heart flutters at the ideas of what he could mean, so instead of speculating I reply, just as seductively as him, 'and are you going to share those ideas?'

'I was thinking more along the lines of this...' Niall trails off, leaning forward and pressing his lips gently to mine. Shocked isn't the word for how I am feeling, more like a "I've-just-been-abducted-by-aliens-and-they're-trying-to-make-me-one-of-their-own-by-making-me-marry-their-king" feeling. Then realising who was kissing me and how much I've thought about this recently, I start to relax and I wrap my arms around his neck pulling him closer to me. I feel Niall slide his arms around waist, tugging me towards him and I oblige by sliding onto his lap, so that I was the one doing the straddling this time. He starts to nip at my bottom lip, begging for entry, which I deny many times (If I'm kissing him I may as well have some fun, right?). On his fifth, no sixth, sixth time I eventually give in, dying to taste his tongue on mine. I start to absentmindedly play with hair on the nape of his all the while he traces lazy circles on the small of my back, attempting to close the small gaps between us and to pull each other impossibly closer. Much to my disliking I was first to pull back because I do savour my life so I need to breathe. 

We stay in that position for a few more minutes before I finally start to speak,

'Niall, I -' I begin to say but get cut off him for the second time today. 

'You don't have to lecture me. I know I shouldn't have done it. So I'll just be going then,' Niall sighs looking down to our laps, sounding like he's regretting what he's just done and trying to push me off him to stand up but I won't let him. 

'Niall, would you just listen to me? What I was going to say if you hadn't interrupted me with all your accusations was that I have been waiting so long to do that. I would have pulled away if I didn't want you to do it,' I shyly say, my cheeks flushing slightly red so I bury my face in Niall's neck but he quickly pulls me away. 

'So you don't regret it? At all?' Niall confirms, trying to stop a smile taking over his face but failing, hugely. 

'Why would I regret kissing you? I don't think that's possible,' I smile back at Niall, to reassure him.

'I dunno, I just thought you would,' Niall says, the hint of a blush creeping onto his cheeks, then his mood seems to be dampened by something, 'what about the awkwardness?'

'Awkwardness? What awkwardness? Niall, when have we ever been known to act awkward around each other?' I question. 

'Yeah, but we've never kissed before. Actually, I'm not trying to make it worse but that wasn't kissing, that was bloody making out,' Niall laughs, trying to lighten his spirits seeing as mind are sky high already. 

'Eh-ehh,' I attempt (and fail) to make the buzzer noise from "Family Fortunes", 'we did. We were about 12 or 13 and we were at home in my house up the big tree in my garden. God Niall, I can't believe you don't remember that! That was really cute!'

'I haven't forgotten that, trust me Julie, but does that even count as a kiss? And we were 12 or 13, we weren't really going to be all awkward because of a little peck on the lips, were we?' Niall asks, trying to work it out for himself.  

'Yes it does! Niall, they can make things so awkward! Don't you remember me and Aaron?' I giggle at the memory of me and Niall in our old class. 

Niall chuckles obviously remembering what happened, while trying to pull me towards him again, 'You guys went from getting in trouble everyday in school for talking to not speaking a word to each other unless you were made to in less than a day! That was the funniest thing! You are so stubborn, do you know that?'

'It was funny for you, really awkward for me. I've been told once or twice before,' I smirk, keeping my arms folded not wanting to give in to Niall. 

'Sure, just once or twice,' Niall rolls his eyes and laughs, 'so what time is this party at?'

'Erm, he said just to start arriving at around nine-ish. So what does that give me, about three hours?' I question, scanning the room for my phone. 

'It gives you - ' Niall starts as he lets me go with one hand and checks the time on his watch, ' - two hours,'

'TWO HOURS?!' I shout, jumping up from Niall's lap and pulling him up after me, 'I need to get ready!'

'Well doesn't time fly when you're having fun?' Niall winks, before being pushed out of the sitting room into the hallway. 

'You can either stay or leave,' I say, not meaning to sound blunt, I'm just a bit panicked. 

'It doesn't take me two hours to get ready so I think I'll just stay,' Niall laughs trying to wrap his arms around my waist but I quickly stop him. 

'Right then, I'm getting ready. Like, now. Are you coming up?' I question halfway up the stairs already. 

'Well, I'll be bored down here won't I?' Niall says as if it's the most obvious thing ever, then starts to jog up the stairs after me. 

'Well then would you be the best friend ever and have a look for that top and skirt? You know the ones, right? The cream top and black skirt?' I ask quickly, while grabbing a towel and standing next to the upstairs bathroom door, looking like a kid who was bursting to pee but there was someone in there.

'As much as I'm ashamed to say this I know exactly what you're talking about. I'll have a look but don't kill me if I can't find them. Now go and shower,' Niall answers while turning me around and pushing me into the bathroom, then walking into my bedroom to search for the clothes. 

After a quick shower, okay maybe it was a little longer. Maybe 15 minutes longer? Anyway, after the shower I step out and wrap a towel around my body, after slightly drying my hair with it, then walk into my bedroom. 

'Niall, how do you know my password!?' I ask laughing slightly, after seeing Niall sitting at my desk with my laptop open and on the Internet. 

'Its the same as your phone password . . . And email password . . . And Facebook password,' Niall grins smugly, turning around on my twisty chair to face me, 'I think I found the right clothes. I'm not too sure though,'

I take a quick look at the clothes before saying, 'Yeah, that's them thanks but how do you know my Facebook, phone and email passwords!?'

'Because they're all the same, maybe? You know one, you know them all,' Niall answers slightly bored, before letting his eyes wander down my towel clad body to my mid-thighs where the towel stopped, then all the way back up again stopping where my hand was holding the towel, because it was starting to fall, just above my chest then making his way back up to my grinning face. 

'Nice view?' I tease, making my way to the bed and sitting on the edge of it before taking the spare towel that was on the radiator off it and starting to dry my legs. 

'Very nice actually,' Niall winks while turning back to the laptop and shutting it down before turning back around. 

'Like you haven't seen it before. You've seen me basically half naked,' I say like it's no biggie, glancing up at Niall to see him looking at me, 'yes?'

'Nothing. So I'm not allowed to look at you now?' Niall questions, a slight smile forming in the corners of his lips. 

'Whatever,' I say, waving a hand at him dismissively before standing up and slipping my black lacy underwear up my legs, under the towel, my black body con skirt following closely.

'Do you want me to leave or just not look or something?' Niall asks, a bit confused at what to do. 

'What's gotten into you? You know I don't care, you come into changing rooms with me all the time. And, I have three older brothers, I know how to change without losing my dignity,' I state knowingly, while clipping the matching bra around my towel and slipping my arms into the straps the pull the towel out from underneath it, so I'm just in my skirt and bra, 'see? No problem,'

'Yeah, but has it never bothered you that you could just be standing there in nothing but your bra and underwear in front of me, and just for the reference I am a guy, and I've not once tried anything on with you when you were like that?' Niall asks confused, trying to figure it out. 

'You not trying anything is probably the main reason I don't have a problem with it. If you did, I'd never do it again because I know what would happen,' I explain while picking my cream t-shirt, that was made from some light material, with a black and white picture of some model or another on the front of it. I tuck the t-shirt into the skirt, making sure there are no bumps showing in the skirt, and make it look kind of flow-ey by not tucking it in all the way, 'Get me? Where did I leave my shoes?'

'Yeah, I suppose I understand you alright,' Niall say, sounding like he actually is starting to understand it, 'What shoes? I spend enough of my time here I'll probably know!'

'They're just plain black high-heels,' I'll check my wardrobe,' I say walking over to the wardrobe, and bending down slightly to root through the bottom of it. I self-consciously pull down my skirt a bit, feeling as though Niall is boring a hole through the bum of my skirt, I decide to let him have his moment while I root though the bottom. After a few minutes of rooting I pull out a pair of shiny, black high-heels and slipping them on over my bare feet and standing up, 'Yay! Found them!'

'I can see that,' Niall whispers in my ear, his hot breath hitting my neck causing my breath to hitch in my throat, and wrapping his arms around my waist. I turn around to face him and toy with the fraying neck of his tatty, old, t-shirt before wrapping my arms around his neck, 'You look beautiful, Jules,'

Then, for some strange reason, I started to blush. Niall has complimented me so many times before and never have I ever reacted like this. 

Oh, we better play that later!

Anyway, I really don't know what gotten into me. These . . . Feelings for Niall. They're all so sudden. I have no idea what to do. Maybe I should just go with the flow for now. See where all this takes us. 

'Thanks Nialler,' I reply, eventually managing to control my blush. 

'So, could you drive me to my house so I can get changed? You know it'll only take me five,' Niall pleads, starting to pull me towards the door in my bedroom.

'Niall, I need to do my make-up. Screw my hair, that'll be fine,' I answer, panicking at the ticking time. 

'You can do it at my house, not that you need it,' Niall smiles, now standing next to my door with me still in his grasp, 'Can we go now?'

'Yea, sure, whatever,' I laugh, quickly grabbing my make-up kit, clutch and phone then with my free hand I grab Niall's and start to pull him down the stairs, 'Grab my keys and follow me out!'

'Of course, no problem,' Niall says sarcastically, realising he was speaking to air. He picks up my car keys and walks out after me, jingling the keys in his left hand and throwing them over the roof of the car to me. 

Catching them in my free hand, which happened to be my right, I slid into the driver seat of my red Fiat 500 and set off in the direction of Niall's house. 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Hey everyone!

Firstly, I'd like to say thank you to anyone who has actually finished reading that awful chapter :)

Secondly, I'd LOVE some feedback on how I could improve and just feedback in general.

And finally, I love you all for reading :')

Thank you again :) xx
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